Houston sports fans who’re dismayed by the current state of the PR-blitzed Texans and the post-Harden, rebuilding Rockets are in luck. The Houston Astros are pitching a return of fans to Minute Maid Park in 2021, the team announced.
“We are planning for fans to return to the ballpark for the 2021 regular season,” Anita Sehgal, senior vice president of marketing and communications, tells CultureMap. Those plans include a “limited capacity and will continue to ensure the health and safety of our employees and fans remains our priority as we finalize our plans and get closer to the start of the season,” she adds.
On Tuesday, January 26, fans received an email heralding the signing of coveted free-agent outfielder, Michael Brantley. The email also included a link to a 2021 season flex plan, offering 20 or 40 ticket vouchers. Those vouchers are available for any home game (fans receive five free vouchers with the purchase of 40, per the email).
For those planning ahead, the Astros open the season at Minute Maid Park on April 8 versus the Oakland Athletics. Fans are also welcome to the 2021 Winter Invitational, a three-day tournament featuring six universities, including University of Central Missouri, the alma mater of Astros owner Jim Crane. The tournament runs January 29-31.
The Astros have been using the Houston Rockets’ game plan for fans as a guide, Sehgal told the Houston Chronicle, adding that they are observing protocols as part of the Houston venue task force — a group created by the Harris County Sports Authority. “Houston has done a great job of having all of these venues stay together and share best practices,” she told the Chron. “We actively participated in that, and we’ve shared our learnings, and they’ve shared theirs.”
Guidance will also come from Major League Baseball.